Chelsea have held initial talks with Carlo Ancelotti about a surprise return to Stamford Bridge, according to reports in Italy.

Ancelotti was sacked by Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich at the end of the 2010-11 campaign after finishing his second season in charge without a trophy.

Antonio Conte’s future at Stamford Bridge has been in doubt since the summer following reports of a fractured relationship with Chelsea’s hierarchy.

Conte is understood to be unhappy with several decisions made regarding transfers during his time at the club, including the call to sell Nemanja Matic to Manchester United and the club’s failure to sign Radja Nainggolan and Fernando Llorente.